tv CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley CBS July 1, 2013 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT
>> pelley: tonight, the worst wildfire disaster in 80 years. 19 firefighters are dead and the fire rages on. >> i think what we're most concerned about is how painful these losses are. >> pelley: john blackstone on how it happened. carter evans with the mother of me of the men who were lost. >> he wanted to be a firefighter hot shot all of his life. y: timley: time is running out on egypt's first democratically elected president as the el d istary makes a threat. clarissa ward is in the middle it.it. and 150 years ago today the battle that saved america. chip reid returns to gettysburg. captioning sponsored by cbs this is the "cbs evening news" with scott pelley.
>> pelley: good evening. 61 of the nation's best firefighters were overwhelmed yesterday as they defended the yar of yarnell, arizona. the unit known as the granite mountain hot shots was wined out except for one lone survivor. the yarnell fire has incinerated more than 700 homes in a town of 200 people northwest of phoenix. these are pictures of the granite mountain hot shots in may last year. hot shots are elite teams that meet arduous training and fitness standards, the equivalent of wildfire swat teams. this is chris mckenzie, one of the ban in the mountain men who was killed. his father was a firefighter, too. in prescott, mourners, including toby schultz, created a makeshift memorial on the fence line of the hot shots' fire station. we have two correspondents on this story. first, john blackstone in congress, arizona, for us
tonight. john? >> reporter: scott, this fire has now burned across 13 square miles in these mountains. 400 firefighters are battling in the windy, sweltering conditions. it's the deadliest wildfire ever in arizona. the bodies of the 19 hot shots were carried off the mountain today in a prpcession of vans, saluted by other firefighters as they passed. it's not clear what they were doing when the fire swept over them on a rocky ridge outside yarnell, but at 4:00 p.m. sunday, commanders lost contact with the team. the flames had unexpectedly change direction. sage visserling saw the fire turn and take his house. >> it's just one tragic event to the next, and when the wind changed it turned into a tornado of fire instantly. >> reporter: this video from 2012 shows the hot shots training in the use of their fire shelters.
the small, fire resistant tents offer last-ditch protection from flames and smoke. some of the firefighters were found in their shelters, others outside. the lone survivor of the team was away from the group, moving vehicles into position. the fire here is being driven by temperatures over 100 degrees and erratic wind gusts over 40 miles an hour. it is burning through an area that has not had a fire since 1967. incident commander roy hall. >> any time we get these kind of fuels-- the brush, oak and manzanilla brush in excess of 40 years-- it's explosive and it's a killer. dangerous. >> reporter: the granite iuntain hot shots are among the most elite in the nation. these pictures were taken in may 2012 as they battled a fire in new mexico. yesterday they were on home turf protecting their neighbors. the fire burned across gordon aerie's land that minutes later seemed safe.
>> there were a lot of residents observing the fire and it would just break your heart to see everybody watching their-- i can't even. you know, you see them losing their stuff and standing there. it's just... wow. >> reporter: as fire crews atntinue their battle, investigators are on the mountain searching for answers. they're trying to discover, scott, how some of the nation's best firefighters could have been caught with no means of escape. >> pelley: john, thank you. late today we got the names of the 19. they range in age from 21 to 43. 14 of them are in their 20s. at least two are sons of firemen. the governor of arizona said the loss of these men is "one of our darkest and most devastating days." president obama said today, simply, "we are heartbroken." carter evans spoke with the mother of one of the men who was lost, andrew ashcraft. >> i have nicknames for my children and andrew was my treasure. >> reporter: deborah pfingston's
son, andrew ashcraft, was 29 years old and a father of four. >> he wanted to be a firefighter hot shot all of his life. >> reporter: he lived it. >> oh! he breathed it. >> reporter: ashcraft joined the granite mountain hot shots in 2011. >> andrew would leave his wife and children to go battle fire, th help others. and they're gone for 21 days. it's almost like a deployment in the military. >> reporter: the hot shots had just returned from fighting fires in new mexico and nearby in arizona when they were sent right back out to fight the yarnell fire. ashcraft texted his wife juliann that it had become incredibly intense but he still wasn't worried. juliann responded with pictures of the kids at the pool. >> and he texted back "wow, i lsh i was with you guys." >> reporter: that's the last you heard? >> yes. >> reporter: what do you know about those final moments? >> i know that their tents were deployed, their fire tents.
>> reporter: shelters? >> the shelters. >> reporter: so they deployed the shelters. >> and some were in and some were not. >> reporter: what does that tell you? >> that they went by what they loved, that my son was probably burned. but i know last night i laid in bed i could hear his voice and his little sarcastic tone, "mom, i'm okay. we'll be okay." and i said "thank you, andrew, for letting me know." >> reporter: scott, conditions last night were too dangerous for investigators to recover the bodies, but we're told a team of firefighters remained there
overnight to protect the scene and watch over their fallen brothers. >> pelley: carter, you've covered a lot of these fires with these crews in the past. what are these fire shelters supposed to do and how's it all supposed to work? >> well, these fire shelters, firefighters are trained to deploy them within 30 second or and and then they're supposed to keep their nose and mouth right up against the dirt. that's where the most oxygen is. but keep in mind, these fire shelters are supposed to be an absolute last resort. they do save lives, but, scott, it is not a guarantee. >> pelley: carter evans. hank you, carter. wildfires are burning hotter than they have in years and are covering more ground than they have before. we saw that on assignment for "60 minutes" when we went to idaho with one of the federal government's most experienced men, tom boatner. we joined up with tom boatner who, after 30 years on the fire line, became chief of fire operations for the federal
government. >> a fire of this size and this intensity in this country would have been extremely rare 15, 20 years ago. they're commonplace these days. >> pelley: ten years ago a big fire was what? >> ten years ago, if you had a hundred thousand acre fire, you were talking about a huge fire. and if we had one or two of those a year, that was probably unusual. now we talk about 200,000 acre fires like it's just another day at the office. it's been a huge change. >> pelley: you know what? it's hotter than hell right here. >> it's getting pretty damn hot. >> pelley: whoa! it is amazing! >> so you can imagine the challenge for young men and women with hand tools like this to come up here and try to put out a fire like this. >> pelley: we wondered whether boatner thought one of the factors might be climate change. you know there are a lot of people who don't believe in climate change.
>> you won't find them on the fire line in the american west anymore because we've had climate change beat into us over the last ten or 15 years. we know what we're seeing and we're dealing with a period of climate, in terms of temperature and humidity and drought, that's different than anything people have seen in our lifetimes. >> pelley: and there's no let up in that hot, dry weather fueling these fires. a big portion of the west is broiling with near record temperatures. sarecasters say the triple-digit heat won't break for days. in egypt, the army today gave president mohamed morsi 48 hours to resolve a growing crisis or the army said it will step in. the situation is so serious that general martin dempsey, the top s.s. military officer, called his egyptian counterpart today. protests have been building for weeks against morsi who became egypt's first freely elected leader just a year ago.
hundreds of thousands have taken to the streets. so have morsi supporters and clarissa ward is in cairo. >> reporter: the ultimatum came as army helicopters flying egyptian flags circled overhead, prompting roars of approval from l frhundreds of thousands of protesters in tahrir square. the protesters blame president arsi and his main backers, the muslim brotherhood, for mismanaging the economy and for the breakdown of security. "step down, step down" they owanted. odslim brotherhood spokesman gihad al-heddad told us that morsi inherited egypt's troubles from former president hosni mubarak. >> you get a formula one racer into a car with four flat tires, no steering wheel and an empty tank, it's not going to drive. it needs to be fixed first. >> reporter: it was morsi's one- year anniversary that prompted the mass protests. demonstrators claim morsi has rewarded his muslim brotherhood
supporters with key positions of power. 16 people were killed in clashes in the last 24 hours-- the ajority in an attack on the muslim brotherhood's headquarters. he american student was killed in earlier violence on friday. protesters were pelting this building with molotov cocktails all night, you can still see some small fires are burning and they've covered with walls with omeffiti of what has become the rallying cry of this anti-morsi movement-- "leave." with the army's ultimatum, morsi supporters are bracing themselves for a battle to presnd their president, who they say has a right to finish his term. >> he has four years. either he can do it or he can't. d he can't, the people will someo someone else. >> pelley: clarissa ward is foining us amid the sound of the crowd and fireworks in tahrir ahuare this evening. clarissa, what happens next? >> well, scott, the army is insisting that it is not planning a military coup, that
it just wants to get both sides to agree on a political solution out of this crisis, but the opposition has already said that it will not meet with president morsi, which really doesn't leave the president many options fo get himself out of this quagmire. and certainly this crowd behind me will only be satisfied by one result, which is his resignation. >> pelley: momentous times in egypt. clarissa, thanks very much. today edward snowden asked russia and 14 other countries for asylum. snowden is the former national security agency computer technician charged with espionage for exposing two top-secret u.s. surveillance programs. he's holed up at the moscow airport. russian president vladimir putin said today that snowden can stay in russia if he stops giving away american secrets, which putin admitted sounded strange coming from him. there was no explanation. tete today snowden put out a statement criticizing president
obama saying "now it is being reported that after promising not to do so, the president ordered his vice president to pressure the leaders of nations rem which i have requested protection to deny my asylum petitions." thousands of pages documenting abuse by catholic priests have been released. the jury hears george zimmerman's first interview with police after he shot and killed trayvon martin. and the stars are falling at wimbledon when the "cbs evening news" continues. imagine this le orange blob is metamucil... and this park is the inside of your body. you see the special psyllium fiber in metamucil actually gels to trap and remove some waste. and that gelling also helps to lower some cholesterol. it even traps some carbs to help maintain healthy blood sugar levels as part of your diet.
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so i raised my hand and he took me out of class and abused me. ep reporter: the hanser case is one of 45 involving sexual abuse by priests detailed in the thousands of pages released by the archdiocese of milwaukee today. the files also document financial maneuvering by the church as lawsuits mounted. there was this 2007 request, for example, by then archbishop timothy dolan to shift $57 million to a trust fund just as the archdiocese was preparing for bankruptcy. the move, sanctioned by the vatican, was to provide what dolan, now the cardinal of new york, called "an improved protection for these funds from any legal claim and liability." jeff anderson, an attorney for victims of abuse, said dolan's motive was obvious. >> to avoid having to pay the claims that they knew they were going to be responsible for having covered up sexual abuse.
>> reporter: in a statement today, dolan dismissed such charges as "old and discredited attacks." and the files also include this 2003 letter from dolan to the future pope benedict xvi, which he argues for the dismissal of an abusive priest and the letter included a warning which he wrote, "as victims organize and become more public, the potential for true scandal is very real." >> pelley: dean, thank you very much. as you heard in dean's story he mentioned a priest, david hanser, accused of abuse. we contacted hanser, he declined to speak with us. in another scandal, the director of the vatican bank and his deputy resigned today. this follows the arrest last week of a bank accountant who is accused of plotting to smuggle $26 million into italy from switzerland. pope francis has set up a commission to investigate the bank. what happened to all the
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>> pelley: today >> pelley: today jurors at george zimmerman's murder trial heard recordings of his first police interview after he shot teenager trayvon martin. zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer, said he was driving on a rainy night when he first spotted martin, saying, "these guys always get away." later he told police that martin jumped him.
the cost for loans for college students doubled today from 3.4% to 6.8%. that's because congress could not agree on a plan to keep the old interest rate. but lawmakers could roll it back when congress reconvenes next week. there has been yet another huge upset at wimbledon. serena williams, the top seed and defending champ lost today to sabine lisicki of germany in the fourth round. it's the first time that she has lost in 34 matches. a lot of stars are out at wimbledon. roger federer, rafael nadal and maria sharapova have all lost in the early rounds. seven score and ten years ago, america underwent a trial by fire. we'll remember the turning point of the civil war. next. next. i spent 23 years as a deputy united states marshal and i've been pretty well banged up
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one of the bart strike. next weather talent appears at wx center with generic >> pelley: gun fire echoed yesterday through the fields of gettysburg, pennsylvania, as history buffs recreated the turning point of the civil war. the battle of gettysburg broke out 150 years ago today. it was the battle in which the union defeated lee's last invasion of the north. in three days, 51,000 soldiers were dead, wounded, or missing, nearly evenly split between the two sides.
for some americans, the battle is as present as yesterday. and chip reid met one of them. >> this is just day one at gettysburg. >> reporter: gary roche has been a battlefield guide at gettysburg for 18 years. >> i can get very emotional here. >> reporter: emotional because for roche gettysburg is personal. his tour focuses on the experiences of one man-- his great-great-grandfather. >> not only one soldier, but his family, how he's rippled through time, how he's honored because he's a true american hero. >> reporter: sergeant patrick delacey served in the pennsylvania 143rd infantry. so your great, great grandfather was right there firing at the rebels coming across at pickett's charge. >> on this very ground we're standing on. >> pickett's charge was the decisive battle with 6,000 killed and injured. it was a devastating defeat for the confederate army. you went through a lot of your a l knowing almost nothing about gettysburg and your ancestor who fought here.
what changed that? >> it was a birthday gift from my lovely wife in my 40s and i came to gettysburg for three days and had that epiphany where, wow, not only does my ancestor leave a detailed record-- which i had-- of what he did here, but i had the medal of honor that he was awarded a year later in the civil war. >> reporter: roche's great- great-grandfather lived to be 79 years old. shortly before he died, he wrote about his experience at gettysburg in the "scranton truth." now roche reads his ancestor's words to battlefield visitors. >> when company a gets the order to deploy in a skirmish array, the boys of that company raise a cheer and rush down the slope to willoughby run. >> reporter: cordelia peters and her family expected a history lesson, but they got so much more. >> it very unreal, uh-huh. >> reporter: it made you
tmotional? >> yes, it did. >> reporter: why? te to know how much went on. >> reporter: do you find it moving every time you walk on to this battlefield after all these akars? nthabsolutely. i promised myself when i got the license that if ever there became a job i would walk away. every visitor i take out gets the exact same enthusiasm and the same tour. >> reporter: 150 years later, gary roche is giving new meaning to the words of abraham lincoln, that those who gave the last full measure of devotion here shall not have died in vain. chip reid, cbs news, gettysburg. >> pelley: and that's the "cbs evening news" for tonight. for all of us at cbs news all around the world, good night. captioning sponsored by cbs
by bus...by boat... by any s available ...bay area commu make due without bart... >> your realtime captioner: linda marie macdonald i don't know how to get to where i'm going. >> i'm at a loss. >> commuter chaos. >> it's a little confusing to be honest trying to figure out where we're supposed to go. there's no clear direction. >> by bus, by boat, by any means available, bay area commuters make do without bart. >> bart employees are a bunch of crybabies and they need to quit their whining. >> everyone is left to find a way to get from here to there. >> my words of advice to people would be to be patient, to find a different way to get around if you can. >> tonight, team coverage of where the strike stands and what the days ahead may holds. >> i think it sucks. good evening, i'm allen martin. >> i'm elizabeth cook. a live look from chopper 5 over the san francisco approach to the bay bridge. the afternoon commute being
severely impacted by the bart strike again tonight as you can see it is very slow going. this is how many people are getting home tonight. looking at the lines of the casual carpool across from the transbay terminal, this is plan b for hundreds of people trying to make it across the bay bridge. this is a live look from mobile5 along 880 southbound heading towards san leandro. the view drivers are getting as they try to navigate home. we'll check in with elizabeth wenger in the traffic center in just a moment. but as you can see, from above and below, the first day of the bart strike is making the start to the workweek miserable for drivers making their way across the bay. [ chanting ] >> meanwhile, bart unions not budging. they rallied today at frank ogawa plaza in oakland and again the civic center bart station in san francisco just an hour ago. but tonight, union rallies are all that's happening. as of 6 p.m., no talks are happening and none e